Tesla powerpacks help Queensland firm go off grid

| April 28, 2018

Linked Group Services, a firm which provides renewable energy solutions in North Queensland, has decided to lead by example and beat high energy prices by going fully off-grid.

Through a 100 kWh Tesla Powerpack battery, a series of solar installations, and a microturbine that runs on natural gas, the firm believes it will become the first enterprise in the country to become energy self-sustaining.

Managing director Jason Sharam says the combination of high electricity prices, an unreliable power network, and political involvement in the country’s energy problems made it an ‘easy’ decision to become self-sustaining.

“We have customers from around here that are paying a levelized cost of energy of between $0.86c – $1.20c/kWh. With the microturbine running, to go off-grid is costing us between 40-45c/kWh. So from a financial perspective, why wouldn’t you?”

Linked Group Services used its expertise in mobile solar and battery storage systems, as well as solar shading structures and solar-powered accommodations, to plan its self-sufficiency drive earlier this year.

The company’s renewable energy project will involve the installation of a 100 kWh Tesla Powerpack battery storage unit paired with a 100 kW solar system comprised of 8 kW on a car port, 18 kW on a solar patio, 20 kW on a storage shed, and up to 50 kW on the company’s main building. According to Sharam, the company’s 100 kWh Powerpack is the first off-grid Tesla battery be used in Australia so far.

Sharam said that going off-grid is a statement in itself, as well as an invitation for other businesses to follow suit.

“One of the major factors for our decision to go off-grid is that it’s a major advertising point. So that we could prove to our customers that it was reliable – more reliable and better quality than the grid. The way we see it, we’re going to transition to renewables eventually, so let’s look for the opportunity.

“We want to help companies of our size be able to have their own control, and security. It’s about knowing what your energy expense is going to be. Avoiding that bill shock. We’re trying to prove a point, to a degree, that we don’t need to connect. A lot of it is about getting control back.”

Tesla’s Powerpacks are an increasingly common battery storage solution for companies around the world.  Manchester Science Partnerships, a prominent science and technology park operator in the UK, recently installed a Tesla Powerpack on its headquarters.

MSP managing director says the system’s scalability allows it to meet the changing energy demands of the company’s HQ. With enough Powerpacks, Renn believes that MSP’s headquarters will eventually be able to operate using renewable energy alone.